Slow Days: Chicken Chasseur

People who are new to Fasting often pose the questions: “Can I really eat ‘anything I want’ on a Slow Day?” and “What should I eat on Slow Days?” To answer those questions, I have decided to add some blog posts to show some of the foods we eat on what the world calls NFDs [non-fast days] but which, in our house, we call ‘Slow Days.’ This feature will appear sporadically. 

Now for the answers. Can you really eat ANYTHING you want on a Slow Day? Not really. If you eat too many calories every Slow Day, you will not lose weight. There are many questions asked on the FastDiet Forum which attest to that. Once in a while you can splurge, as long as it isn’t everyday. For what to eat on Slow Days, Dr. Mosley recommends a Mediterranean Diet. As for how we eat, an example follows.

We enjoy eating the chickens that we raised ourselves — it is good to know that we have them in the freezer. Besides that, chicken is good for you: recommended in the Mediterranean Diet and the MIND Diet. When we schedule chicken for two Sundays each month, the cook must have many, varied ways to prepare it. Roast Chicken is wonderful, producing meals and soup stock. And then there is Chicken Chasseur. The name ‘chasseur’ refers to hunters, as does its Italian equivalent ‘cacciatore.’ This marks it as a meal of Autumn, when the hunting parties would be in the woods finding game AND wild mushrooms. Mushrooms are the hallmark of any proper chasseur recipe. We seek wild mushrooms all year ’round, but this meal is specifically for cool weather.

mise en place for Chicken Chasseur Recipe is from Salute to Healthy Cooking by the French Culinary Institute.

To serve two, I’m using two leg-thigh pieces which have been browned in a little oil. Even though the meat will be braised/stewed, it is a good idea to brown it first since that enhances the flavor. Here is the full recipe:

24 oz bone-in chicken parts
salt & pepper
1 tsp oil
Season chicken and sear, skin-side down, for 3 mins in a Dutch oven or heavy cast-iron pan with a lid. Bake 20 mins @ 350F. Remove chicken from the pan, then skin and bone it.
½ cup sliced onion
1 carrot, chopped
2 c. brown stock or Veal stock
Put the veggies in the pan you used to roast the chicken. Cook 3 mins until caramelized. Add stock and simmer until reduced to 1 cup. Strain through a sieve and skim fat.
1 tsp oil
2 c. [5 oz] sliced mixed mushrooms
2 shallots, minced
Good mushrooms can be found in most supermarkets if you are not able to hunt for them. Saute shallots with mushrooms 5 mins or until mushrooms are golden. Add a sprinkle of salt and remove from heat.
2 Tbsp cognacAdd cognac to hot mushrooms and flame the mixture.
1/3 cup dry white wineAdd to pan and return to heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 10 mins. Add sieved, defatted stock and simmer 5 mins, until sauce coats the back of a spoon.
Fresh tarragon leaves
boned chicken meat
Add to sauce and warm while the noodles and carrots [see below] are cooking.
3 oz broad egg noodles
¾ cup carrot coins
½ tsp sugar
Cook noodles as the package describes. Cook the carrots in as little water as possible, along with the sugar. You want the water to boil away at the point when the carrots cook, which leaves them with a slight sugary glaze.

This is really quite easy to prepare and worth all the little steps. It makes a fine meal for Autumn into Winter.

For the perfect wine to pair with it, go to

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